Customer Analysis The Foundation For Marketing And Sales Success
An infoUSA Mid Market Solutions White Paper
Customer Analysis: The Foundation
for Marketing and Sales Success
Customer Analysis: The Foundation for Marketing and Sales Success 2
Who are my customers? Every company wants an answer to that question. That’s
because the better you know your customers, the better you can meet their expectations
and the more you can sell and market to them. This paper will explore the importance of
customer analysis, and offer four easy steps you can take to gain a better understanding
of your customers.
Reap the Benefits of Better Insight
You’ve been asked to plan a dinner party for 40 business associates, but you know little
about your colleagues. Should you arrange a backyard barbecue or a formal, sit-down
affair? Should you invite a guest speaker? What about entertainment? Your first step
probably would be to request a guest list. Second, you would contact your co-workers
and quiz them on their preferences. Finally, you would search for a common thread that
ties this group together. Once you’ve done your homework, you’re ready to plan an
evening full of fun and entertainment.
Marketing to your customers is a lot like hosting that party – you can’t market to them
effectively until you truly understand them. Do you understand their needs? Do you know
what problems they are trying to solve? Are you sending them the right offers, at the right
time, through the right communication channels? Do you have the most up-to-date
information on your target audience? By learning more about your customers, you can gain
a better understanding of your market. And by identifying hidden opportunities within your
customer files, you can create targeted marketing campaigns that produce profitable results.
Need more reasons? Analyzing your customers
can also help you:
Increase sales with your existing customers
Once you gain a deeper insight into your customers, you can
better target them with relevant offers, as well as create
cross-sell and up-sell campaigns centered on their business
needs. By understanding your customers’ attitudes, purchase
history and demographics, you can build strong customer
loyalty, retention and rewards programs. Most importantly,
you will directly contribute to their success.
Boost customer acquisition
By understanding the unique characteristics of your best customers, you will be able to
better leverage your time, energy and resources into pursuing similar prospects.
Understand your market potential
Building an accurate profile of your customers helps you analyze your market areas –
understanding how well you are doing in those areas, pinpointing where you need to
improve and gaining insight into market potential.
Customer Analysis: The Foundation for Marketing and Sales Success 3
Save time and money
How much money do you waste marketing to people who are not going to purchase or
presenting the wrong offer to people who might? Understanding your customers will help you
save the valuable time, money and resources often spent pursuing the wrong prospects.
Build stronger relationships
It’s no secret that retaining your customers is critical to your success. This is especially true
when you remember that 80% of your sales come from 20% of your customers. A thorough
understanding of your customers means you can solve their challenges faster. By tailoring
your offers and personalizing your messages, you’re showing your customers that you
understand their needs and value their business. And by building strong relationships, you’re
creating ever-greater value for your customers.
Finally, understanding your customers helps your planning. You can predict what they will
buy and continue to introduce new products and services. By educating yourself on your
customers’ needs and understanding their business, you will gain an edge over the
A gold mine of information
Your business is sitting on a gold mine of data that can be used
to understand your customers and target new prospects. But
how can you unearth that valuable information? Here are four
simple steps you can take to gain a better understanding your
1. Keep a clean database
Gathering data on your customers is relatively easy; keeping it
accurate and timely is the difficult part. At some time, your
customers will change their telephone numbers, addresses or
email addresses and drop off your subscriber list. If your
database contains outdated information, you’re slowly losing the
ability to connect with your customers. More importantly, you’re sacrificing a valuable source
of revenue. That’s why it's so imperative you update your customer database regularly.
Some companies have the time, expertise and resources to manage the process in-house.
Consider hiring a company that specializes in data hygiene. These companies will cross-
check your data against their records to ensure you have the freshest addresses, phone
numbers and other contact information. They can merge files and remove duplicates. They
can also help you increase deliverability by ensuring the addresses in your lists are current
2. Enhance your customer information
Once you scrub your customer files, chances are you’ll discover gaps of information. If
your database is limited to only names and addresses, you’re sacrificing an opportunity to
contact customers through multiple channels. Adding contact information such as email
addresses and telephone numbers can help you increase sales conversion rates through
Customer Analysis: The Foundation for Marketing and Sales Success 4
multiple, well-timed campaigns. By adding demographics and firmographics, you’ll gain a
clearer picture of exactly who is buying your product or service. This added insight will
help you develop solid strategies to retain, service and grow your customer base.
Google “data append services,” and you’ll get more than 300,000 results! Similar to data
hygiene services, these companies will compare your database against their records and
add missing data where available. So how do you find the best fit for your company? Do
your homework and ask business associates who they use to enhance their customer data.
3. Identify common characteristics
Accurate customer information is just the beginning. Now you need to drill down to find
common traits among your customers. By identifying the specific characteristics unique to
your customers such as net worth, expendable income or likelihood to use technology,
you will learn more about your best customers and be able to identify potential customers
just like them. You can also gain insight into customer lifetime value, behavioral trends
and spending patterns. Armed with this data, you can focus your resources on your most
profitable customers and prospects with the highest potential to be profitable.
This critical step in understanding your customers requires the help of company statisticians
or your IT department. A few companies specialize in customer analysis, and a few web-
based applications give you the power to do your own in-depth analysis rather than waiting
for the IT department to run your reports. Again, do your homework and ask your business
associates for recommendations.
4. Talk to your customers
In today’s age of blogs, emails and website surveys, calling your
customers seems old-fashioned. But making time to chat with
your customers – minus the surveys or scripted questions –
creates trust and better communication. You can discover new
ways to help them because you learn more about them. And just
as importantly, you can discover what they need from you.
Understanding your customers is a never-ending road of learning. By integrating these
simple steps into a committed plan, you’ll be well on your way to uncovering hidden
opportunities within your customer files and identifying a whole host of sales prospects.
You’ll be able to create targeted marketing campaigns that engage prospects and increase
sales, response rates, retention and profits.
Still have questions? Call Kristin Hermann at 866-716-7680 or visit us online at
infoUSAmm.com. We can help you gain a deeper understanding of your customers, and
make you database and direct-marketing efforts more productive.